Queer Mormon Women*: I Don’t Like Pizza

Guest Post by Michaela

This is a post that is a part of the Queer Mormon Women* series.  Click HERE to see all the posts to date.

Michaela is a twenty year old girl with a passion for writing and film making. 

 

I want you to imagine for a second, that you have found the person of your dreams.cards

This person is fantastic.

You spend time with them, you get to know them, and you start to realize that you genuinely like this person, maybe even love them.

You talk a little, flirt a little, maybe go on a few dates.

There’s only one problem.

You don’t like pizza.

When you tell them, they laugh a little and play it off as a joke. “No, it’s true. I really don’t like pizza.” You say. Their humor turns into confusion. They don’t understand. How can you not like pizza? Everyone likes pizza. “I don’t know. I just never have. There’s no appeal to it at all.”

Ah, but of course you just haven’t tried the right kind of pizza. Or you were denied it so much as a kid you’ve convinced yourself you don’t like it. You’ll learn to like it eventually.

“No. I really don’t like pizza. I don’t think I ever will.”

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Queer Mormon Women*: Bats in the Belfry

Guest Post by Roxanne Akina Harmon

Roxanne Akina Harmon is a bisexual, body positive promoter of public health from New Hampshire.  She seeks to help humanity and gain friends along her yellow brick road to happiness.

This is a post that is a part of the Queer Mormon Women* series.  Click HERE to see all the posts to date.

Rescuing a bat in the attic involves two materials: a laundry basket and a tennis racket. batsMy family swears by this makeshift butterfly net. Once caught, the confused critter violently flaps until released into the night sky. The chaos subsides and is forgotten. My anxious thoughts act similarly to a bat in a laundry basket. They erratically shriek inside my head refusing to settle. At one point my mind was host to entire colony of frenzied bats. In situations like church I would sit in the pew mirroring the listening congregation. However, I would not hear a single testimony. The anxious thoughts flapped loudly about my conscious. To soothe this disquiet I imagined my ideal future. I saw my boyfriend and I blissfully wed. I pictured the studio apartment of our future but when visualizing the bed the fantasy dissolved. I would never share a nuptial bed with my boyfriend.

My best friend was my first love. Our emotionally intimate romance never rounded any bases. To my young Mormon mind the lack of carnality proved the maturity of our love. Learning sex was a sin my entire life had led me to conclude that sensual aspects of love were superficial. Attraction was temptation. So I agreed when my boyfriend suggested we stopped being physical. While I treasured our chaste kisses and sweaty hand holding, I understood those acts to be trivial. I let myself compromise physical touch so I could still be in a relationship with the man I loved. That night the bats crept in.  

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Queer Mormon Women*: Love Isn’t Everything

Guest post by Megan Howarth

Megan is a Utah native and a current resident of Logan. She is a homebody and an activist, and writes for the Young Mormon Feminists Blog.

This is a post that is a part of the Queer Mormon Women* series.  Click HERE to see all the posts to date.

Growing up in the church female we were always told we needed to be good girls. We were taught that the boys were the ones that wanted and thought about sex; that it was our job to not let them go too far, as if they were the only ones whose minds could become clouded with passion and lust. As a teenager I never had any reason not to believe this; it matched my experience completely and I took these messages to heart.

 

Woman with pink umbrellaIn fact, I took it to extremes. While other kids in my largely Mormon junior high would skirt around the no dating before 16 rule by pairing off and holding hands while avoiding actual “dates”, I decided on no flirting before age 16, no hanging out before age 16, no giving boys the time of day before age 16.   In short, I was the model Young Woman that my leaders pointed to as an example to the other girls, and was quite smug about it. I remember judging the other girls, thinking I was superior to them for following the rules better than they did. Why didn’t they have more self-control? Why were they so boy-crazy?

 

After high school, things began to change.

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Queer Mormon Women*: Coming In

Guest Post by Tatiana Folborg

This is a post that is a part of the Queer Mormon Women* series.  Click HERE to see all the posts to date.

Tatiana Folborg was born in N.Y. She traveled with her mother as a army B.R.A.T. (born raised and trained) throughout the world. It was through these travels that she gained a love for other people’s cultures,ideas and worldviews. At 14, she felt a renewed peace from the LDS church and converted from Judaism and Catholicism. It was also at this time that she began to realize her same sex attraction was not a “phase.” She hid this secret in her early associations with the church,and served a mission in Argentina years later. She became active in her YSA Branch for many years and finally found the courage to come out to a few friends there. One of those friends introduced her to Affirmation Women where she has a maintained a strong presence ever since. Tatiana Folborg’s life mission is to help others on their path to peace and understanding of who they are. She is a teacher both inside and outside of the church to kids of all ages. She follows the African Proverb: ” The baby calf watches the mother cow eat,” which means to be truly effective, we must teach with our words as well as  our actions.

 

Several years ago, I was doing a teaching observation where six and seven year olds gave presentations on weather. One insightful child said:  “[Rainbows] come after the rain. …..It has to all come down before the rainbows can come out.”   Working through the “Coming Out” process, I have been amid many raging and life changing storms.  A process which, at the same time, has brought me many wonderful Rainbows.  I began to  realize that in order to truly find the courage to “Come Out,” I had to work on “Coming IN”.

Coming IN-to Positive Understanding:rain1 (2)

I had to make the self realization that I was not born a mistake or that somehow if I was faithful enough, my feelings would somehow disappear. I came to realize that I did not have incurable disease or simply decide “to go that way”.  I was created by a loving God who wants nothing more than to see me happy. He has revealed over and over the importance of loving each other and that had to start with myself. Someone in a church talk said that church is not a buffet line we can pick and choose what suit us best and still claim we are “faithful.”  This analogy can also be applied to ourselves. To be whole and complete, we must strive to love ALL ourselves not just the parts the world says or decides we should. This includes our choices in whom we choose to love and build solid relationships.

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What he DIDN’T say….

d-todd-christofferson-largeAs many of you know, the LDS church gave a press conference two weeks ago. The Bloggernacle has since exploded with commentary about what it means, what it doesn’t mean, who said what, who apologized and who didn’t.

I’d like to turn our attention for just a moment to what WASN’T said.

In more than one interview, when responding to questions like, “What about members who support a different political stance than the one you’re outlining?” Elder D. Todd Christofferson offered similar answers.

 

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Dear Mormon Allies, Now What?

Guest Post by A Group of Queer Mormon Women

rainbowWhen we saw the “Day of Apologies” initiative a few days ago we thought it sounded like a pretty cool idea. It was in direct response to church leaders claiming that the church doesn’t apologize, and so in that sense it seemed absolutely appropriate. We read the blog posts and found a list of apologies that sounded quite accurate. Several of them applied directly to our experiences, and we kept waiting to feel a sense of overwhelming warmth and love come over us as we were reading them. Instead, what we felt was a slight sense of unease.

 

It took us a little while to figure out what was causing this unexpected reaction in our guts. We really do think that apologies are necessary. We really do think that they can heal wounds and bring great comfort to those who need them. But in this case we feel that the apologies are not really meant to help us. They are aimed at us, but they aren’t really for us.

 

Look, we know that those of you who are apologizing are good people. We know that you are trying to recognize your own privilege and apologize for the mistakes you’ve made. And we think that is an appropriate step to take. But this whole campaign feels just a little…icky. A little self-serving. And we’re not okay with that.

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